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Spring, 2017

CBC Radio’s The Best of Ideas Podcast

The Best of Ideas podcast is updated every Monday. Please note: podcasts are archived for 4 weeks only. This is without a doubt the best informational podcast out there. Check out “How to Think About Science” and of those, the talks with David Abram and Sajay Samuel are fantastic

Gilles Gobeil, Trois Songes

The pieces included on this disc are related in at least three ways.

First, they were all realized at the same location: the Zentrum für Kunst und Medientechnologie (ZKM) in Karlsruhe (Germany), where I had the opportunity to complete four residencies (for a total of almost 11 months) between January 2005 and August 2007.

Second, they all share the same musical intention. These three pieces could be classified as ‘program music,’ since they are all based on a literary argument. Ombres, espaces, silences… came from Jacques Lacarrière’s 1975 book Men Possessed by God, which I read with fascination almost 30 years ago. This book tells, with detachment and ethnographic flair, of the quest for the absolute of the first monks of the Christian era. Entre les deux rives du printemps is an attempt at setting to music my impressions while reading Part Three of Dante’s great poem The Divine Comedy. As for Le miroir triste, it is kind of a ‘cinema for the ear,’ based on an unshot scenario by Andrey Tarkovsky entitled Hoffmanniana (1975), from which I have tried to evoke a few scenes.

Their third connection is found in their sound materials. I found inspiration in (and taken liberties with) the marvelous heritage of past music, an extraordinary source of colours that allowed me to borrow from the strong and still fresh poetry of various pieces, some of them ancient. Also, all three works contain materials generated by René Lussier on his stunning and rather frightening daxophone.

I would like to express my gratitude to the manager of the Institut für Musik & Akustik of the ZKM, Ludger Brümmer, and the whole technical and administrative crew, for their quality services and unfailing support during my stays at the ZKM. This album is also partly theirs. Thanks also go to René Lussier, François Gauthier, Mario Rodrigue, and Dominique Bassal.

Gilles Gobeil, Montréal [English translation: François Couture, x-07]


THIS AMERICAN LIFE, the FREE weekly podcast.

What else can I say? This show continues to amaze.

Captain Beefheart TROUT MASK REPLICA

Given total creative control by producer and friend Frank Zappa, Beefheart and his Magic Band rehearsed the material for this 1969 album for over a year, wedding minimalistic R&B, blues, and garage rock to free jazz and avant-garde experimentalism. This album is never far from my grasp and provides an endless stream of whimsy and unrestrained inspiration for me.

Francis Dhomont FORET PROFONDE (Deep forest)

Forêt profonde (Deep Forest) is an acousmatic melodrama, based on Bruno Bettelheim’s essay The Uses of Enchantment (Alfred A Knof/Random House, New York 1976), of which this is the third version; an extensively modified version, almost double in length compared to earlier versions. It is a listening on three levels — novelistic, symbolic, musical — more disconcerting no doubt, but more active than an unidimensional listening. -from liner notes.


The Dukes Of Stratosphear, 25 O'Clock (W/Book) [Limited Edition, Original Recording Remastered]

Limited digitally remastered and expanded edition of this 1985 mini album from The Dukes Of Stratosphear, the '60s-obsessed alter-ego of XTC, packaged in a hardback digibook featuring brand new artwork, sleevenotes, nine previously unreleased tracks and the enhanced video for 'Mole From The Ministry'. The Dukes Of Stratosphear was almost the worlds worst secret: everyone knew it was XTC, but that did not seem to matter. Here was band who, in 1985, wanted to make an album that sounded like it was made in 1967 and to sound just like every other band in 1967. It was destined for either catastrophic failure or a huge success. When they presented the songs to Virgin, they jumped for joy and The Dukes Of Stratosphear became a proper band. 2009.